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Science Environmental Science

Veniceland Atlantis

The Bleak Future of the World's Favourite City

by (author) Robert L. France

Libri Publishing
Initial publish date
May 2012
Environmental Science, Italy
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    May 2012
    List Price

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Out of print

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Venice, one of the world’s most beautiful and beloved cities, may also be one of the most endangered, and this book, written by a distinguished environmental scholar, gives equal weight to both the environmental and the social problems plaguing the “Queen of the Adriatic.” Based on careful analysis and many interviews and including a multitude of photographs and relevant quotations from popular novels, this comprehensive study examines the precarious state of the city and concludes that the very future of Venice is in doubt. The author explains that not only are the rising sea levels and floods detrimental, but the millions of pleasure-seeking tourists—whom the Venetians have allowed to destroy, possibly irreparably, the social fabric of their city—are also taking their toll on one of Italy’s greatest treasures.

About the author

Contributor Notes

Robert L. France is a professor of watershed management at Nova Scotia Agricultural College and a former professor of landscape design at Harvard University. He is the author of The Handbook of Landscape Regenerative Development and Design, The Handbook of Water Sensitive Planning and Design, Ultreia! Onward! Progress of the Pilgrim, and Wetlands of Mass Destruction: Ancient Presage for Contemporary Ecocide in Southern Iraq. He lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Editorial Reviews

"Veniceland Atlantis, part photo-essay, part polemic against decades of bureaucratic neglect and a carnivorous tourist sector, reveals that  the "death of Venice" is linked to broader concerns about the environment, climate change and tourism… France's book is required reading for anyone who cares about the future of the beloved city."—Jack Watkins, The Independent

"Robert France's Veniceland Atlantis is an extraordinarily comprehensive account of the multiple, and dire current circumstances of the "world’s favourite city". A remarkable achievement from which I learned a great deal."—George Baird is the former Dean of the Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Design at the University of Toronto

"This book is a one-stop source for getting up to speed on the problems and possible solutions…A new necessary purchase for all good Venice bookshelves."—Jeff Cotton, Fictional Cities

"Robert France's Veniceland Atlantis is wonderful!  It is an intensely personal work that I love. This is a necessary book for the heart as well as for the head."—Robert Abbott, founder of the sustainability consultancy firm Abbott Strategies

“An important book. . . . The world is just beginning to wake up to the fact that all is not well with the city, and here Robert L. France outlines the many and complex reasons why.”  —Anna Somers Cocks, chairman, Venice in Peril Fund

"Veniceland Atlantis tells the true story of Venice's many problems and most importantly does not back away from controversial issues, including identifying those most at blame for the state of the city."—Engelbert Ruoss, former Director of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization's Venice Office

"Integrates a variety of sources: novels, photo essays, monographs, environmental reports, and urban plans to document the effort to stave off the inevitable in a place “associated with impermanence and imminent death."—Journal of Planning Literature

"As Robert France correctly remarks in this significant publication, Venice is very much on the front lines in how coastal cities will have to adapt to sea level rise. Veniceland Atlantis is one of the very best books to clearly illustrate the complex social dynamics of addressing engineering solutions to climate change." —Peter Liotta, former director of the Pell Center for International Relations at Salve Regina University

Other titles by Robert L. France